published Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Georgia running back Tolerance Shepherd plans to play for UTC Mocs

Picking the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga "really wasn't that hard a choice," Fitzgerald (Ga.) High School running back Tolerance Shepherd said Monday, a day after committing to the Mocs.

The 5-foot-9, 180-pound Shepherd was one of eight uncommitted football recruits who visited UTC last weekend, and he was one of three who committed to the Mocs on Sunday. Shepherd's commitment gives UTC 10 with three weeks to go before signing day on Feb. 1.

"When I came up there I fell in love with the city, and the coaches all seem like good people," Shepherd said. "It seems like everything's set up for the best interests of the athletes, and I liked that and my mom really liked that."

As a senior, Shepherd rushed for 1,564 yards on 183 carries -- an average of 8.5 yards per carry -- and scored 20 touchdowns. He earned GSWA honorable mention Class AA all-state honors and was named to the Macon Telegraph's All-Middle Georgia first team and the Tifton Gazette's All-Tiftarea first team.

Shepherd said his only other offer was from Butler (Kan.) Community College. The Mocs return all of their running backs from last season, so he will be joining a crowded backfield.

Contact John Frierson at or 423-757-6268. Follow him on Twitter at

about John Frierson...

John Frierson is in his seventh year at the Times Free Press and seventh year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...

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